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Hi's Eye

The Student News Site of Westfield High School

Hi's Eye

The Student News Site of Westfield High School

Hi's Eye

Pro-Palestinian protests continue on college campuses

Photo courtesy of Ryan J. Karlin
Pro-Palestinian protest at George Washington University

Protests regarding the Israeli-Hamas war have spread on American college campuses in recent weeks. These protests have been pro-Palestine and the protesters are demanding that universities cut financial ties with Israel and they also demand a permanent ceasefire in Gaza. As of Hi’s Eye print deadline, nationwide arrests on campuses have surpassed 2,500 students according to

Around the country, students have set up large tent encampments, showing their support for Palestine. The protesters have not moved from their encampments and the protests show no sign of slowing down.

Protesters at Columbia University, who had set up large tent encampments in the center of campus, according to, appeared to have jump-started protests around the country. The protests at Columbia forced the university to switch to remote classes, as administrators struggled to come to an agreement with the protesters.

Following days of protesting outdoors according to, protesters entered Hamilton Hall, one of Columbia’s buildings and set up camp inside. The New York Police Department was called to clear the building on April 30 and more than 100 protesters were arrested.

According to a statement released by Police Commissioner Edward Caban, 29 percent of those arrested were not affiliated with the university.

After one week of near lockdown, Columbia announced on Monday that the university will hold smaller graduation ceremonies for each of its 19 colleges and cancel its main commencement ceremony.

The NYPD were also called to New York University’s campus on May 3 to clear an encampment. A letter from NYU claimed that the protesters “created a continuing risk of violence due to the presence and behavior of hundreds of individuals not affiliated with NYU drawn to the encampment, including acts of vandalism.”

At the University of Southern California, administrators also decided to cancel graduation. Students on campus say that it feels different after the LAPD came and arrested over 90 protesters last Wednesday, according to “I walked by the first day when there was the LAPD confrontation and since then I’ve mostly been avoiding going back to campus due to the complexity of the situation,” Cole, a USC student, said to ABC30.

At the University of California Los Angeles, police are working to clear the encampments. Protesters have been more violent at this university than at other schools and have thrown piece[s] of wood and plastic water bottles at law enforcement, according to

While clearing out the encampment, some protesters were injured, but none sustained any serious injuries. While protests have remained largely civil, some protests have become antisemitic. At Northeastern University, the protesters chanted or used slurs, including “Kill the Jew.” At UCLA, a Jewish student was blocked by the protesters from entering his on-campus class.

Ryan Karlin, student journalist at George Washington University and former Hi’s Eye editor-in-chief, spoke to Hi’s Eye about the protests at GW. He said that police put up a barrier around the encampment, but “[the protesters] ran down the barriers and piled up the fences. They put them in a pile in the center of the quad and sat on top of the pile and waved a flag.”

As a student journalist, Karlin has been reporting on the protests at GW. “[The protesters] haven’t been the friendliest towards [the journalists],” said Karlin. “I’ve talked to several of them. They’re going to stay there until the school stops investing in the companies that they don’t want them to invest in.”

The protesters are requesting that their universities and institutions sever ties with Israel. According to, protesters are calling on their universities to “divest their endowments from Israeli companies or defense companies supplying weapons to Israel.”

Protests regarding the Israel-Hamas war continue to rise on college campuses nationwide and they show no signs of slowing down any time soon.

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